For this week’s Tea Time – in which I sit down with another young woman, make us a brew and discuss some of the problems (and positive stuff!) that we are facing as women in our twenties – I caught up with a friend* who is currently working with women suffering from mental health issues.
In the same week as Caroline Flack’s tragic suicide, questions have been raised surrounding the media’s coverage of sensitive topics like mental health and domestic abuse. One moment the media are hounding women – as seen with Meghan Markle – with their intrusive coverage and the next, they’re deleting these very articles and sympathising with the women.
Flack’s death has also prompted the Government to call on social media firms to remove unacceptable content on their media platforms. Currently, regulation of social media platforms is lax and few laws are in place to govern what can be published by anyone holding any opinion.
This also comes just a year after research suggested girls spend a higher amount of time on social media than boys – contributing to higher rates of depression, online bullying and poor sleep. In September last year, ONS also reported that levels of suicide rates have increased to 11.2 deaths per 100,000 in the population.**
Following the tragic death, the source* I interviewed commented on social media’s impact on mental health. She said: “It’s worse nowadays as people have less responsibility with what they comment and talk about online, so a lot more people are being trolled or bullied. It gives people an outlet”.Interviewee
“I think there’s the added pressure of having to keep posting to keep up with your friends and making sure you come across as having the perfect life. A lot of people don’t realise social media doesn’t reflect real life”.Interviewee
In my Tea Time vlog, I ask her what her role is in the psychiatric hospital, if dealing with other people’s trauma has an impact on her own mental wellbeing and about job hunting post-university. Click the link above to watch the video and make sure to subscribe to my Youtube channel and to follow my social media channels (Instagram / Facebook).
*The interviewee requested that her identity not be revealed, so her face remains anonymous in the video.
**For more information and support with mental health, contact Samaritans UK: 116 123
**Disclaimer: I am not a medical professional and this post is not medical advice. If you are worried about any issues raised in this post, seek advice from your Doctors, or look at NHS helplines.
Samaritans helpline: 116 123